A defense attorney for one of the White men charged with the murder of Ahmaud Arbery is facing backlash after claiming the murder trial is a “public lynching” of the defendants.
The Associated Press reports defense attorney Kevin Gough addressed the court on Friday, saying that the trial has been “infected by mob violence by the woke-left mob.”
“This case has been infected by things that have nothing to do with the guilt or innocence of these defendants, Gough told the judge. “Third parties are influencing this case. They’ve been doing it from the gallery in this courtroom. They’ve been doing it outside. This is what a public lynching looks like in the 21st century.”
Gough’s comments are in response to Rev. Al Sharpton, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and Martin Luther King III leading a rally of hundreds of pastors and Arbery advocates outside the courthouse on Thursday.
Travis McMichael, 35, his father Gregory McMichael, 65, and William “Roddie” Bryan, 51, have pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, aggravated assault and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment in the killing of Arbery.
Arbery was shot while jogging through a Brunswick, Georgia neighborhood in February 2020. His killing was recorded on camera and lead to national outcry. All three men were charged with one count of interference with rights and one count of attempted kidnapping in the federal case.
The McMichael’s were charged with one count of using, carrying, and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. Travis, who fatally shot the jogger, was charged with discharging a firearm.